Ontario NDP Leader Andrea Horwath meets with nurses in London, March 2, 2016. Photo by Miranda Chant, Blackburn News.

Horwath Sounds Alarm On Health Care

Andrea Horwath says Ontario’s health care system is in crisis.

The leader of the Ontario New Democratic Party met with nurses from the Ontario Nurses Association in London Wednesday. She says the nurses expressed concerns about cuts to front line staff, the lack of beds, safety, and the growing demand for mental health support.

“No matter what part of the hospital or community you’re talking about these nurses are very, very concerned about the kind of care their patients are getting and the kinds of stresses that their profession is under,” says Horwath. “Epic levels of stress, situations where patients are lined up in hallways, where nurses are concerned for their own ability to provide the necessary care.”

In the budget tabled last week the Liberal government promised $51.8-billion for health care in the province. Horwath says it isn’t enough money to meet the needs of hospitals.

“It’s a straight trickle down. If the government is not funding the hospitals, the hospitals are then laying off nurses,” says Horwath. “It’s not what patients deserve, it’s not what Ontarians deserve and it’s certainly not what they want.”

Horwath says after 13 years in power in Ontario, it is time the Liberals start piecing back together the health care system they let fall apart.

“Premier Kathleen Wynne needs to actually listen to the professionals, listen to the people on the front lines, listen to the patients,” says Horwath. “Both those groups of people are telling the government the same thing – stop the cuts to health care, start investing in our most treasured public service which is our health care services and hospitals, and make sure people get the care they need.”

Horwath will be continuing her roundtable discussions with nurses next week, when she plans to travel to northern Ontario.